Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Tales of Poop and Pencil Shavings

There is a learning curve to raising an infant. The learning curve is not the gentle curve, but much more erratic. It's about as smooth as trying to ride a mechanical bull inside a VW beetle. Sweet baby Ella. The photos are so tranquil but there is a behind the scenes. It's a hidden reality that we as the public pretend is not there. For example: Does a super model rip off some giant farts while taking a dump? Probably, but we don't think about that. It's the same with baby.

I can tell you my hands have been thoroughly irrigated by baby urine several times. I hear urine is quite sterile, so in many ways I am cleaner than I have ever been. My diaper dexterity is rapidly improving and Ella is even a little calmer as she seems to sense I have developed some level of competency. Previously her cries were simply expressing the feeling we would have if our doctor showed up in a Skynyrd t-shirt smoking a cigarette for our physical....not a lot of credibility. Baby can see right through the facade of the "World's Greatest Dad" t-shirt and the smell of hand sanitizer.

On one occasion, during a changing, a cute little spout of urine flowed from the baby while her diaper was off. It was kind of funny and she seemed pleased with her accomplishment. The next time however, it involved urine running down her back onto the changing thingy (kind of looks like mini bouldering pad) and also onto me. Not as cute as this time, as I was now changing diaper, clothes, changing pad cover, changing pad cover cover and basically bathing the child with diaper wipes.

Then comes the crapping. Whoa. If I crapped that much I would have to subscribe to a lot more magazines. I have not been hit by any crap, and usually keep it off my hands now which is both rewarding and convenient.

The rewards of being a father are amazing. The baby really just wants mom, so I hold her when she's sleeping mostly. When she wakes and tries to suck on me, she finds little success. It's far more furry and flat than what she is looking for under my shirt. That rapidly progresses to crying which only ceases for a quick diaper bombing or arrival on mom's lap. This keeps momma really busy and pretty much the sole provider of anything important for baby E. In mom's downtime she rests or scribbles out to do lists for me. This leaves me doing anything I can to help around the house and keep the infrastructure going around baby E. Momma has a lot going on and so I get assigned some very rewarding family duties. Just this morning it was imperative that I get all the pencils in the pencil drawer sharpened (at 7am). Later today I may be polishing the toaster or checking the batteries in the smoke detector with my tongue. Everything baby E, or momma, would want to keep the home comfy and warm will be at my beckon call. I am totally fine with this arrangement as it's the least I can do in exchange for the other half having to act as a feeder for the baby like those bottles our hamsters drank out of.

After sharpening the pencils mom teared up a bit with joy. This may be because I did such an immaculate job of sharpening or simply because she is a little emotional, I will let that be her little secret (but I think I am a very good pencil sharpener).

Saturday, February 21, 2009

I'm Responsible for a Small Human Being

Childbirth. It's a secret society that you are not let into until you have been there. There is a reason for this. It's like a tornado filled with dynamite in a sex education class taught by Sam Kinison. Sounds pretty crazy, but I can't divulge anymore details because there may be people reading this who have not been admitted into this secret society. I was surely standing in that delivery room like a deer in the headlights of an F-14 going the speed of sound. All of a sudden, there's a baby and I am sobbing with joy and I can't feel my hands because they are tingling like I just jumped out of an airplane.

Then my eyes see the most amazing baby ever. By the time I go to bed that night my head is spinning with emotions (it's been a crazy couple of days). We took all the classes to prepare, but putting diapers on and bathing the plastic doll is a bunch of crap compared to the real thing, no pun intended. I changed my first diaper today and it was a lot like trying to type with your feet. By the time I finished, I used half a pack of wipes and the used diaper was in the trash like a roadkilled carcus. I have no idea how to bundle up a used diaper and the baby ended up with crap on her feet, ankles and who knows what else that I missed. She wasn't pleased with me putting on the new diaper, but it didn't fall off when I picked her up which was a huge moral boost (equivalent to a participation ribbon in a track meet). I have no doubt that I will figure this out, but I openly admit I have no idea what I'm doing. Scary? Yes. But give me a break, everyone that does this is in the same boat. Sweet baby, take it is easy on your dad, he's usually a pretty quick learner.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Farewell Old Friend

Daisy the dog, lived a life as full as any dog could ever hope for. Most that knew her questioned whether she understood that she was actually a dog. After all, she spent her life sleeping in a bed, under the covers, until I was married. After that she slept on the best chair in the house and was covered by a blanket each night. Failure to fulfill her expectations would undoubtedly leave her walking in circles near your bedside clicking her nails in disapproval until you rectified the situation.

There are a lot of stories out there about this dog. My career path and education left her in the hands of many wonderful friends to watch over her through the years. She spent one Spring Break on the beach in South Carolina while I guided a group down the Rio Grande River. She spent a semester at the University of Iowa with my friend Matt while he was in Medical School and while I was an intern in Tennessee. She spent countless time with my parents and inlaws whenever we traveled. It would not have been possible to board this dog. After all, who would cover her up at night? She ate whole loaves of bread and other sundries from unsuspecting caregivers who were not savvy to her ninja like tactics.

Most of all, she loved people. She wanted nothing more than to be on your lap, in your bed or standing on your foot at all times. She would happily jump up on the couch and lay her head on your lap hoping you would pet her velvet ears. I, and I only, could pick her up and hold or carry her like a baby her entire life. Cradled in my arms on her back, or upright on one hip. It looked totally ridiculous, but it was just what we did. 50 pounds or not, she loved it. She lived up to the stereotype of the Vizsla breed being called 'velcro dogs' as she always wanted to be touching you.

There are not too many people that know me and didn't know, Daisy. When I purchased this fine beast at the naive and careless age of 19 I had no idea what I was doing. I didn't tell my parents and they certainly questioned the purchase to say the least. I bribed my sister to ride with me to get her in the fall of 1995. She was a slippery little beast in her young age. Lots of energy was a giant understatement.

In her last couple of years she had lost most of her hearing and the majority of her sight, but she always came home with a spotless bill of health ready to go for a walk, then sleep for 20+ hours. After she turned 100 (in dog years) I changed her name to Miracle. She was deaf, so it didn't matter to her and I thought it had a nice ring to it. Over the years she was also lovingly referred to as, the Sneezla (Trent, who now has 2 of his own sneezlas), Sneezie (Brandi), Daisers (my dad), Maisers (Matt and Carli Herold), That Dog (Boone), The Beast (Pertzborn) and many others that probably contained expletives based on her immediate behavior at the time.

Her final moments were on my lap, in my arms; exactly the way she was when she was 8 weeks old over 14 years ago. Daisy: Often imitated, never duplicated. I know that I will never have another dog quite like her. She was above and beyond anything I could have ever asked of a dog and more. While she will be missed by me a lot, her stories and legend will be around a long time among my friends and family.

Goodbye Daisy from Justin Evidon on Vimeo.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Impatiently Waiting

Long story short: Baby is due this Thursday, it feels like it should already be here. I don't do that well with waiting. I hate waiting in lines, stoplights, traffic, just about anything that doesn't allow me to move at my desired speed, which is usually timely and efficient. Waiting for your first child to come out is really a strange type of waiting. I really want to meet her, but realize each day that life will never be quite the same once she arrives. This isn't bad, it's just different. She is certainly kicking, pounding, rolling and moving like she may want out of there soon, and sometimes I wonder if she is ok in there. I asked her (the baby) today, and her response was a foot to my wife's ribs. Hmmmm, I bet that's how my wife wishes she could answer some of my questions as well. What to do while you hang around home waiting for a baby?

Today we decided we needed to make space in the freezer. This really means that my wife thinks I should eat all of the old food in there. So for lunch I ate pre-Obama onion rings, and a flaming meatball sandwich (made up recipe). That pretty much left me a few beers short of Homer Simpson. Having all motivation rapidly taken away I settled in to feed my PGA Tour addiction. Next thing you know a little Facebook, the Wild were playing hockey, and WHALA, I wasted the entire day. I took enough naps throughout the day that I am not tired tonight and am wondering why my DVR is recording the show 'Hole in the Wall?' Moreover, why is this show on television to start with? My big day of napping, watching golf, and eating made me too tired to make supper so I ate some crackers and deer sausage which means I now feel like crap and will probably feel worse when I wake up. I suppose that it's good for me to document this as the next posting on this blog will probably involve the birth of my child and my interpretation of that whole process. It's likely this description will be morbidly sarcastic, so be prepared. If this baby really wanted to be a daddy's girl, she would be on time, or even early. That's probably not going to happen and this is natures way of preparing me for the estrogen invasion that my home will soon undergo. It will be like throwing away your Twisted Sister posters after you got married and started painting accent walls in your house to match the towels you bought at Bed, Bath and Beyond. Instead I will be having tea with a little girl and three random dolls while I paint my own toenails and pretend the really small chair I'm sitting in is comfortable. In the end, it's really what's best. I am going to dig into the freezer for some more freezer burned 'treats.'

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Superboulder III Video

This year's Superboulder has a video to document the event compliments of Jevidon. It's pretty sweet....check it out.

Super Boulder III from Justin Evidon on Vimeo.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Superboulder III

It's in the books. Another Superboulder event at the West Saint Paul International Climbing Facility (a.k.a. my garage). Superboulder this year was headlined by the 5 gallon keg of homebrew compliments of Haun Brewing Company. There was also International competition thanks to George the Canadian. The Canuck was a veritable jack of all trades climbing, baking, making salads and sharpening knives all during his appearance. His brownies laced with Cognac were top shelf!

In an effort to live just a few days, or weeks, longer we shyed from the standard "fried food only" rule of the past two years. I guess the reprocutions of the days that follow far outweighed the joy of feeding on grease soaked delights. The fryer was in action, but it was complimented nicely by a grill full off brats cooked by a certified Wiscononian. Superboulder had record attendance with the unofficial numbers coming in somewhere between 16 and 20 people.

The food creation of the night was definitely the "winged brat." This fantastic creation topped one of Wisconsin's finest links with a hearty helping of Buffalo chicken wing dip. It was truly cramming everything amazing into one fabulous bite. The celebrity appearance was by Kyle Klingmann from We are hoping that he will report on the event as there was a small skirmish which could have been constrewed as wrestling by a passerby. When the game had been finished and the keg became much lighter, we all settled in for a fitful night of indigestion as we dreamt of the eclecitc mix of food, spirits, climbing and football that make up the kaleidoscope of culture know as Superboulder.